The Seattle Mariners have reportedly acquired former All-Star second baseman Jorge Polanco from the Minnesota Twins, per MLB.com's Marc Feinsand.
The Mariners are reportedly sending four players back to Minnesota, along with a chunk of cash. Major league pitchers Anthony DeSclafani and Justin Topa are heading to the Twins, along with prospects Gabriel Gonzalez and Darren Bowen.
Gonzalez was ranked as the Mariners' third best prospect according to MLB Pipeline's 2023 mid-season list.
Polanco was voted onto the American League All-Star team back in 2019. He's fallen off a bit over the last two years, however. In 2022, he hit a career-low .235 with a .751 OPS in 104 games. He missed significant time again in 2023, starting just 80 games for the Twins. His .789 OPS was a step up from the prior year but his defense has been slipping the past two seasons and he's already 30 years old.
Polanco does fill a hole for the Mariners, who were looking at Luis Urias and Dylan Moore prior to the trade. The move allows Seattle to push those two guys into bench roles, assuming Polanco can stay healthy for the full campaign.
It has been a busy offseason for the Athletics' division rivals, who have made several trades and a couple free agent signings thus far. They look like a stronger team heading into 2024, which isn't a great sign for A's fans.
The A's lost 12 of their 13 contests against the Mariners during the 2023 season. They scored just 25 runs in those 13 games while allowing 68. The A's will hope to put up a more admirable performance against the Mariners during 2024, though the team isn't much improved roster-wise.
In addition to the Polanco news, we have some potential updates with the relocation process.
Apparently the Tropicana Hotel has stopped accepting reservations beyond April 1st of this year. A few weeks ago, Brodie Brazil had reported that they were only accepting reservations through the end of the year, so that has changed.
Whether there's any impact on the Athletics' attempted move is unclear. It's possible that the Tropicana is just buying some time and trying to avoid any potential reservation refunds if they end up setting a demolition date. The site needs to be demolished before they can start re-building on the land.
Howard Stutz of the Nevada Independent had a good write-up on the situation. From the piece, "The Tropicana can’t set a closing date until the A’s have all their stadium agreements and financing in place".
John Fisher has claimed that he has the funds necessary for the project but it's unclear whether that's true or just another lie from the Athletics' owner. Ultimately, nothing will happen with the site until the A's have their plans set in stone. As of now, there aren't any signs that we're close to that happening.